Child Play Therapy

Giving kids permission to play 

Play therapy is a fantastic way to engage children in feeling comfortable enough to share what they’re going through and feeling. At Transitions Counselling Centre, we give them permission to play and in return, they open up to us. 

PLAY THERAPY CAN HELP

The use of play therapy as a tool helps children work through emotional issues. It allows children to form deeper self-esteem which helps improve their lives. Play Therapy can be used to address these concerns and others:

  • Behavioural concerns
  • Attachment
  • Emotional concerns 
  • Relationships
  • Communication development
  • Traumatic past experiences 

Children are often not able to communicate their feelings in the same way adults do. This type of therapy allows children to recreate, and with the assistance of the therapist, discuss the feelings and emotions they’re feeling. Whether it’s sadness, anger, worry or extreme happiness, all feelings are welcome during play therapy.

TECHNIQUES USED IN SESSIONS

There are a variety of types of expressive play therapy including dramatic and fantasy play, sandbox play and art-focused play. When a child comes to us, we allow them to explore the office and select the play activities they want to do. This helps build trust and a therapeutic alliance between the child and therapist.

The child’s therapist may also choose certain activities to help certain types of emotions or reactions come out. For example, they may encourage the child to play with dolls to elicit emotions pertaining to family.

HOW WE WORK OUR MAGIC

This type of child therapy works best when it happens consistently. So, having a predictable schedule of the day and time remaining the same allows your children to get comfortable with us.

While a parent may want to ask questions to their child about the session, allow your child to reach out to share first. If the parent is tempted to ask, it could hurt the trust and comfortability that the therapist has worked to gain with the child.

We are here to support you along your journey.

MEET THE TEAM

LISA MOORE

MA Counselling Psychology, RCC, CCC
Clinical Counsellor and Certified Play Therapy Supervisor

It’s my goal to help people heal and grow through periods of transitions in their lives. Many of us experience loss, grief or unhappiness as we transition from one role to another in our daily lives. 

It’s my honour to help counsel you during these difficult transitions and help you heal from any of these experiences: 

  • Dreams you don’t achieve
  • Changes in career
  • Diagnosis of a child with special needs
  • A loved one entering long term care
  • Divorce from a spouse 
  • Beginning of a new marriage
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I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC) through BCCAC. I am also licensed through CCPA and hold a CCC license. I completed my Masters of Counselling Psychology at Trinity Western University and began working in my own private practice in 2016.  Before going back to school to pursue my masters, I worked as a senior executive in sales and marketing.  I believe that my unique education has allowed me to help people grow and develop and create change for themselves.

About 10 years ago, I became involved in helping a family with special needs children and it was through that journey that I came to the work I am most passionate about; helping parents of special needs families. Using play therapy, I am able to access children for ADHD, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, Autism and other types of learning disabilities.

The following list below are my areas of specialization:

  • Personal development
  • Assertiveness / Boundaries
  • Depression, anxiety & panic disorders
  • Phobias
  • Past or recent trauma or abuse
  • Relationship and couples counselling
  • Addictions
  • Divorce, separation and blended families
  • Eating disorders and addictions
  • Life transitions
  • Gender dysphoria, LGBTQ transitions & other issues
  • Communication building
  • Grief counselling
  • Career planning

CHILD AND YOUTH THERAPY

  • Child play therapy
  • Self esteem and confidence coaching
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Career exploration with youth
  • Dealing with separation and divorce from the child and parents perspective
  • Helping parents and children with strategies to deal with ADHD and ADD
  • Assessments for Autism, ADHD, Oppositional Defiance Disorder 

PARENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS ADVOCACY AND MEDIATION:

  • Access to assessments and diagnosis
  • Psycho-educational, Autism, ADHD testing
  • Referral to local psychologists for assessments and testing
  • Referral to local behavioural consultants and creating a behavioural intervention team
  • Mediation with school districts and IEP planning
  • Access to 3rd party funding and Ministry of Children and Family case workers
  • Completing government and agency paperwork to obtain funding, therapy and resources
  • Family planning at transitional ages: birth, school age and adult

DESIREE DSILVA

MA Counselling Psychology, RCC, CCC
Clinical Counselor and Certified Play Therapist with a Specialization in Anxiety

For us to heal from the experiences and struggles we face, we must allow ourselves to process our thoughts and emotions. I work with clients in a gentle and non-judgemental manner. I offer short term and long term goals focused on counselling for children, youth and adults.
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I have experience helping clients cope with depression, anxiety, self-esteem and self-acceptance. We work together to set boundaries and build inner strength. I offer counselling for children with autism as well as support for parents and guardians. My approach is holistic, and I draw from cognitive behavioural, solutions focused, and strength based therapies.

I have a Master’s degree in counselling psychology, and I will be licenced as a Canadian Certified Counsellor (CCC) from the Canadian Psychotherapy Association in a few months.

NADINE VIKER

Certified Play Therapist | Behavioural Technician

As parents we sometimes feel at a loss as to how to help our child, particularly when they are experiencing difficulties in more than one area of their lives: at school, with friends, regulating emotions, academically, socially or behaviourally. My personal experience and my love for children has helped me to realize that many parents need support and I have a passion for helping children and parents navigate these challenges.

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My drive and my passion for helping children took me to Stenberg College where I worked on and completed my certification as an Education Assistant, and I was POPARD trained and became efficient in ABA training. I took my passion for working with children and started working in the school-based system where I enjoyed 5 plus years. My time in the school-based system opened my eyes to the increasing behaviors in the classroom, but most of these children had no support as they were diagnosed with ADHD or other behavioural issues. I felt there was a need to understand and help these kids to understand themselves and to navigate the school setting that was so turbulent for them, so I designed a program based on accountability and awareness that has been extremely successful. I felt there was so much more to learn so I broadened my scope and took Expressive Play Therapy and Play Therapies at the Justice Institute Of BC. I have also attended Sand Play Therapy at Trinity Western University. I have been working as a Behavioral Technician at Crossroads Collective and with my added training can also offer Play Therapy Counselling in addition to my skills as a behavioural specialist. I am excited to share my training, education and passion for helping children. It is a pleasure for me to work with a child, inclusive and alongside the families, to give a comprehensive and overall panoptic treatment plan

SHANNON LAWRENCE

Certified Play Therapist | Behavioural Programmer

Are you stuck at a crossroads in your life and you are not sure which road to take? Let me assist you in teaching you the skills you need to grow yourself or your children.

I have over 20 years working with young children, families, and youth. It started as an ECE provider. After my experience within daycares, I wanted to expand my skills. I was very intrigued by the minds of children on the spectrum, so I took a program at Douglas College in which it enriched my knowledge of intellectual and physical disabilities.

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This is where my journey started into the world of Autism and other neurological disorders. Since then, I have worked in the Surrey School District as an Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) / Support Worker (SW) and an Education Assistant. I have been a Behavioral Consultant and Interventionist for children/teens since 2002. Within that time, I have had experience working with a wide range of children with various diagnoses. Whether it is Autism, Asperger’s, Anxiety Disorder, ADHD and ODD, I have worked with many different multidisciplinary teams supporting individuals with challenging behaviours. I have taken various workshops, and I am always learning new skills to improve and assist the families that I am working with.
I recently took Expressive Sand Play Therapy at Trinity Western University as well as completing my certificate in Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT). I have experience in Play Therapy as well through the Justice Institute of BC.

As a Play Therapist, I see myself as a facilitator of learning. It is my responsibility to create and maintain an environment where the children and families feel valued, motivated, supported, and encouraged to learn and progress continuously. My goal is to help each client with their unique individuality and aspirations.
I have a passion for teaching, playing, learning, and bringing out the best in all adults and children. Let me assist you in your journey.

TRACY TILLAPAUGH

Clinical Counsellor (RCC)

My goal as a therapist is to help people live a more balanced and connected life. We all experience difficult phases in our lives. I provide a safe, non judgmental space for people to work through the complexities that life can bring. By taking a holistic view I strive to help clients address several facets of their lives, thereby bringing about balance and peace.
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I am a Registered Clinical Counselor. I have a Bachelors in Education from The University of Alberta,, and I have my Masters in Counseling from St. Stephen’s University. I have been counseling for twenty years.

I have training in Satir family systems, EMDR, CBT (Cognitive behavioural therapy), DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy), and I work from a holistic perspective.

HAO YEN LIM

Clinical Counsellor (CCC) & Certified Play Therapist

Counselling is more than just a professional process. Rather, it is about a personal journey that both client and counsellor take in collaboration. The cooperative relationship paves the pathway for recovery, healing, and breakthrough. Ultimately, the main thing for a client to know is that they are not alone in this venture, and understanding will be given with empathy. In my practice, I am invested in my clients, making sure that they are my main priority throughout every session. I am focused on creating a sense of trust, security and comfort for those in need of such refuge. It will be an honour for me to serve you to the best of my ability and work together to ensure a better future.
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When it comes to treatment and therapy, I implement an integrative approach that consists of a variety of techniques. This is encompassed by the likes of mindfulness-based strategies, solutions-focused mapping, and client-centred directions. Overall, I take what I know of the client and curate the best possible form of treatment for their concerns or issues at hand. I never fail to inquire further for more information that can be helpful to the goals that clients want to reach. However, I am also respectful of certain boundaries that need not be crossed at the specific time, unless it would be helpful to do so under the consent of the client.
My passion is for the generations, and I continue to seek out further professional development so I can give the best help possible to those that need it. My biggest themes in practice are authenticity, empathy, compassion, and understanding. I am also familiar with different cultural backgrounds and can speak Mandarin, Cantonese, English, and Malay for those that may be more comfortable with these languages.

Currently, I hold a Masters degree in Counselling Psychology with Yorkville University and I am also working as a clinical counsellor with healthcare professionals at a Youth Wellness Centre. My role there is to provide sustainable support to youth-at-risk and their related family members or caretakers using a Solutions-Focused Brief Therapy lens. I bring this experience to my private practice to help clients and their families in whatever way I can.